Oh you’ll take the high road and I’ll take the low road,
and I’ll be in Scotland before ye….
We all know at least some of the words to the traditional Scottish ballad “Loch Lomond“. But who among us knows the captivating story behind the song. Playwright and lyricist Maggie Herskowitz sorts it all out for us in her new play Loch Lomond, which is directed by Isaac Lamb in its world premiere at Broadway Rose Theatre Company.
As the legend goes, in 1745, wee James (Colin Stephen Kane) suffers an attack of testosterone poisoning and leaves his family’s quiet Highland farm to join the Jacobite rebellion against Britain’s King George. His older brother Lyle (Benjamin Tissell) pursues James in hopes of bringing him home. But the two are captured by the British, thrown into a makeshift jail, and sentenced to hang at dawn. With no chance of escape, the brothers settle into a reckoning about their lives, their hopes, their regrets, and their many losses–including, for Lyle, his wife Elspeth (Danielle Valentine) and for James, his girlfriend Ailey (Hannah Lauren Wilson)–as a distant church bell tolls the hours before dawn.
Herskowitz has fashioned a compelling musical from the legend and the song, which was first published in 1841. Her characters are real, flawed, well-intentioned, and ultimately heroic. Their bonds and the choices they face make this truly a three-handkerchief event. Fair warning. Come prepared to be moved. Bonus: audience members will finally learn the difference between the “high road” and the “low road”.
The music by Neil Douglas Reilly offers an attractive blend of traditional Celtic and more modern Celtic influence with music direction from Benjamin Quintel. The creative team includes Alex Meyer, set and prop design; Carl Faber, lighting design; Kimberly Hergert, costume design; Brian Karl Moen, sound design; Jane Holmes, wig design; Charles Grant, assistant director; and Jessica Junor, production/stage manager.
Loch Lomond runs through October 24 at Broadway Rose’s New Stage, 12850 SW Grant Avenue, Tigard, OR. Tickets are available here.
Broadway Rose Theatre is taking precautions to keep its business healthy and patrons, artists, and staff protected. Per Oregon’s indoor mask requirement, all guests and staff must wear a mask in the theater. In addition, Broadway Rose requires proof of full COVID-19
vaccination or proof of a negative COVID-19 test within 72 hours of the performance for anyone not vaccinated, including children under the age of 12 and those who are unvaccinated due to medical condition or religious belief. Proof of vaccination or negative COVID-19 test along with photo identification will be checked at the door prior to entry. Artists have been vaccinated and actors are not required to wear masks while performing. Broadway Rose has also implemented a number of safety measures and practices including improved air handling, cleaning, and digital programs. For more information visit www.broadwayrose.org/company-updates.